Ranking Member House Judiciary Committee Congressman Doug Collins-(R-GA) spoke with Brian Kilmeade about the House Judiciary Committee holding Attorney General Bill Barr in contempt of Congress for not complying with a subpoena for the unredacted Mueller report. Collins says democrats are pitching a fit by holding Barr in contempt because they want to smear Barr because the Mueller report didn't go their way. When asked if Robert Mueller will be testifying in front of the House Judiciary on May 15th, Collins said there has been no indication Mueller will be coming to testify but hopes he does and would like to ask him why he didn't put into his report how the investigation started in the first place. On former FBI Director James Comey saying the FBI doesn't spy, Collins replied, "Hearing comments like that, I don't need a paper bag, I want to vomit in a paper bag when I her the former director of the FBI who took a fake, unsolicited, unverified, salacious dossier and made it the basis for FISA warrants."
Plus, Rep Collins, weighs in on Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signing a law allowing teachers to be armed in schools, saying, "It's a sad response to a sad society that people are taking their problems out in ways that shouldn't happen...is that the best alternative? Probably not what you want to have, my wife is a teacher and we have to find ways to provide security."
REP. JERROLD NADLER: This was a very brave and momentous step that we were forced to take today to move a contentious citation against the attorney general of the United States. We did not relish doing this, but we have no choice; it's an attack on the essence of our democracy.
BRIAN KILMEADE: You know, we were talking about a lot of things. We were talking about the series of brinksmanship (ph) going on with Iran, Venezuela, North Korea. We're talking about school shootings, which has happened twice in two weeks and now we have a situation where in Florida, they're going to arm teachers. And the other side show that we have in Washington that used to be the center of things because it's out nation's capital, has turned into a flat-out embarrassment.
One of the most embarrassing series of moments and speeches that I saw took place yesterday, because I don't even think the people wasting our time believe what they're saying. Doug Collins joins me now, ranking member on the House Judiciary Committee. As you hear Congressman Nadler -- Chairman Nadler claim we're in a constitutional crisis because he wants the unredacted Mueller report, which he has the opportunity to see 98 percent unredacted, and chose not to. Ranking Member Collins, thanks for joining me. I found this unbelievably aggravating yesterday. What was it like being there?
REP. DOUG COLLINS: It was even worst because I had to sit right next to him. And it was -- I mean, the -- the sad part about it is, is you just hit it on the head, I don't even think they believe their arguments. And especially -- and how I know that? I just go back a few years and look at their quotes and their tweets from a few years ago when Eric Holder was held in contempt, and they pitched a fit about Eric Holder being, and that was after 400 days.
We're talking 10 times faster in our committee, simply because they're wanting to smear the attorney general to continue this false narrative that things were going wrong, that Mueller report actually did show something that it didn't show. I mean, this is just -- there's no constitutional crisis. The only constitutional crisis occurring is the chairman of the Judiciary committee asking the attorney general and subpoenaing the attorney general by the way, to do stuff that he knows is illegal.
KILMEADE: I don't -- see, what I don't get, I've picked up documents, and they're so redacted -- the 9/11 report. I'm saying to myself, what's behind those blocks. What did Saudi Arabia do? I had so many questions about different terrorists, but I just said, you know, for the sanctity of that document and our security, I don't believe the government is hiding things from me; there was so much at stake.
I'm reading this report and a lot of the redactions are protecting investigations that they want to go forward on President Trump. So -- and the other stuff is clearly ways and (ph) practices of our surveillance on Russia. There is not a black rectangle that I see, that I think to myself, wow, this is what the Democrats are talking about, nor are they able to point to a passage or a page that they need revealed.
COLLINS: No, there's not. And I've read -- I have went down -- I actually took the attorney general up on his very offer to go down and there (ph) would be (ph) an even less redact report, which is basically 99 percent of the report. And I can tell you right now, there's nothing there that contradicts anything; it does exactly what you just said. It protects ongoing investigations on some folks we that we already knew had trials coming up or ongoing investigations going on. It does nothing to stop that.
The problem here is, Brian, is very simple. They didn't get what they wanted out of the report. They need to find somebody to blame for that. They have chosen to blame Bill Barr. And they believe that by tainting Bill Barr, by rushing to a contempt (ph) in which -- by the way, a judge will throw this out. The subpoena that they issued is illegal on its face for asking for grand jury information and stuff like that. And then yesterday, the chairman had the audacity even beyond what you played -- he had the audacity to actually say, a subpoena is just simply a start of a dialogue.
Any attorney in this country had to be rolling over it with either hilarious laughter or just saying, this is the stupidest thing I've ever heard, because that's not what a subpoena is for. He later went on to say that a subpoena is for -- to give you more heft (ph) in court. There was actually a judge in the room that (inaudible) and they know that that's not true. So they're trying just to paint Bill Barr as a bad person so that they can continue their assault on the president.
KILMEADE: So, are you somebody, Doug Collins, as a Republican, that would be against Bob Mueller coming to the Capitol on the 15th?
COLLINS: No, and he's not coming on the 15th. There's no indication he's coming on the 15th. In fact, they're still discussing that. But I've got no problem because actually, my discussion is, is bob Mueller is going to say exactly what Bob Mueller's report says. There's no obstruction and no charge -- there was no charge of obstruction and no collusion by any Americans. Let's get at the heart of this.
But I'll tell you what I would like to know Bob Mueller; why did he not put anymore in the report (inaudible) public about how this investigation started? Why was there not more about the corrupt cabal (ph) of Comey and -- and Strzok and McCabe, and how they began the investigation?
Even the mainstream media of the New York Times is now picking up on the fact that the FBI was using spies in Papadopoulos. And this is the stuff that started this entire thing, that started the two year process. So I want to know why there's not more in there. They disproved the video, they did a lot of things. But these are the kind of things that will show that the president has been honest about this from day one.
There was no collusion, and the report says that. There is no charge to obstruction. The problem is, they have no agenda, Brian. You want to get to the deeper issue? Look at the past few weeks we've had bills on the floor, it is nothing. They have nothing to offer the American people, except to paint this president as someone they don't like and is illegitimate, and I just don't think it's going to work.
KILMEADE: So listen to what Nancy Pelosi said to the Washington -- and listen to the crowd's reaction. Cut ten (ph).
NANCY PELOSI: We do have a good old (ph) jail down in the basement of the Capitol.
But if we were arresting all of the people in the administration...
We would have overcrowded jail situation, and I'm not for that.
KILMEADE: Right. She was talking about could you actually do to the attorney general.
COLLINS: Yes, look, that -- that's one of the saddest things I've ever heard her say, and I heard this yesterday. Look, actually the picture that keeps coming for the jail is actually where -- it's called the crypt. It's where they keep -- it was originally designed for other things. I think this is just a sad statement that when you're bankrupt on ideas like the speaker is, when you have nothing to offer, then you make jokes in public about officials being arrested, and the problem is, they -- they've run up against a problem.
In this administration, especially when they want to paint the president, the reports didn't say anything that was wrong, and I think this continuation of a narrative in which you promised your electorate (ph) we would impeach him, we would get rid of him, and then you've got nothing to do it on? All they can do now is -- go through these investigations. And it's really sad that the speaker of the House who should be -- even what she ran on, or what her group ran on is to promote agenda -- is simply promoting a paint and smear campaign against this administration.
KILMEADE: So, James Comey is going to have a town hall, I'm just trying to think when I've ever heard of an FBI director - former having a town hall. He does a book tour that never ends, goes internationally and mocks the president and now goes with Anderson Cooper.
This is what he said yesterday on CBS about spying, cut 29. Twenty - excuse me.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
JAMES COMEY, FORMER DIRECTOR, FBI: The FBI doesn't spy, the FBI investigates, we investigated a very serious allegation that Americans might be hooked up with the Russian effort to attack our democracy.
The Republicans need to breathe into a paper bag.
(END AUDIO CLIP)
And he kind of mocks your interest in finding out how this started.
COLLINS: I think the interesting thing is here is hearing comments like that. I don't need to breathe in a paper bag, I want to vomit in a paper bag when I hear the former director of the FBI who took a fake, unsolicited, unverified salacious dossier and made it the basis for FISA warrants.
Let me - I - you know, this is the part that bothers me. When you have a former FBI director who took an - and said I will make the decisions on a investigation of Hillary Clinton in which they had already began to determine (ph) what they wanted from the highest levels of the Department of Justice on that they were not going to ever charge her before they ever sat down with her.
They gave five (ph) witnesses to this immunity to sit in with her interview. You know, to - his pompousness is really getting old. His 15 minutes ran out a long time ago. And I think what he's going to find out is what he doesn't want to have is Bill Barr, the inspector general who's going to have an issue on a report here in the coming months that's going to be very critical of him.
If I was him, yes, I would be out there trying to make my name as possible because when the truth comes out, I'm not sure it's going to show Mr. Comey in the light that he wants to be shown in.
KILMEAD: So, Congressman, I'm talking to Doug Collins, ranking member in the House Judiciary Committee. What's next? So we now Nadler played his card about the redactions and he found the attorney general in contempt. He says it's a constitutional crisis. End?
COLLINS: No, the - next they got to take it to the floor, they'll - probably within the next couple of weeks they'll end up, you know, taking this to the floor, it'll go down as one of the quickest, you know, from a - from initial request to contempt that you've ever seen.
And then it'll actually go and this - in a - this is a criminal content but has a civil aspect to it. And they'll probably end up having to go to - they'll go to court on a civil aspect to get this information.
The sad part about this is is when you look at - a contempt should come at an end pass, there's no end pass here. The Department of Justice was offering different steps to make available what he would like to see in, you know, in very much the way that he has been acting.
So as long as DOJ was continuing this process, you know, barring a contempt hearing, you know, there - no judge is going to sit here and look at this and say this is at an end pass.
No, get back in a room, work this out. And actually what he did yesterday, and this is something that's not brought out, the chairman actually made it harder for legitimate congressional oversight to happen by making a mockery of a subpoena in contempt process.
He actually makes it harder for the congress to do its function, not the opposite way around.
KILMEADE: So I don't know when's the last time you talked to the president, but he's got an economy that's roaring, he's got a major Chinese delegation with a lot of state tariffs going on within 24 hours, maybe midnight tonight on China, they warned us not to.
So that'll affect our great economy, but I think it's a necessary fight. But at the same time, Frank Luntz weighed in last night with Laura Ingram and said advice to the president, forget about these battles, focus on the economy, cut 32.
(BEGIN AUDIO CLIP)
FRANK LUNTZ, AMERICAN POLITICAL CONSULTANT: He's going back to his single greatest strength as president, the single greatest success of this administration. When you have unemployment at 50 year lows, employment at 50 year highs and particularly among African American, Latino workers, you have a success story.
And the more that he focuses on it and the more that he draws the contrast between himself and Barack Obama, the more credit he's going to get for the economy and Laura, this is the one place where his approval numbers are up in the mid 50s, very strong. At 50 year highs, and particularly among African-American , Latino worker; you have a success story. And the more that he focuses on it and the more that he draws the contrast between himself and Barack Obama, the more credit he's going to get for the economy (inaudible). This is the one place where his approval numbers are in the mid 50s, very strong. This is what he's going to need to be successful in the next 18 months.
KILMEADE: If you talk to the president one on one, would you say something similar?
COLLINS: I have. And we've talked about that. And look, he needs to focus on -- you know, when he needs to talk about the craziness of these investigations and he's done so and he's done so in a very effective way, I think one of the things is -- is -- is I would -- is what I (ph) want to do, and he did last night a little bit in his rally, is focus on these economic notes (ph), focus on the good things that are happening.
The Democrats don't want anybody to hear that and they accomplished media folks who will help them do that in the mainstream media. Focus on this contrast, but also at the same time, he is fighting back, we're on the Hill fighting back, and that's what I have told him as well. We're going to make sure that the story gets out and when they overreach and they're overreaching right now, we're going to keep that focus going. So I think the president needs to focus on what he has done, fighting back is what he does best and he'll continue to fight against these -- really, these ridiculous continuative investigations after he's already been cleared.
But I think it is a message for Republicans in general that we've got to focus on the things we're winning on, and that is the economy. But also Brian, this is another thing, we've got to go back to making sure that the Democrats understand that they're ignoring stuff like a crisis at the border. For the first time in almost a year, we have the ability to tell the American people -- and the American people are beginning to understand that there is a crisis at our border.
KILMEADE: There is, and the president mentioned that last night. I'm actually going there Saturday -- I'm going there tomorrow; we're going to take a ride with the border patrol. And then Saturday with the secretary of Defense and secretary of Homeland Security together, talking about how they're going to be building a half-mile of wall a day. They've got about 200-plus miles to get done with the Army Corps of Engineers, and how they're going to coordinate together.
We wanted the Pentagon to spend money elsewhere, but they're going to coordinate it with the Homeland Security down south, so I agree. I'm going to leave you with this question; a little bit different, but I know you care about it, and that is school safety. And you saw what Ron DeSantis, your former colleague did as governor of Florida; he signed into law that teachers have an option of being trained and being armed in the classroom. Doug, how do you feel about that?
COLLINS: I think it's a sad response to a really sad society where the people are taking their problems out in ways that it should happen. And I think Ron has made a very calculated decision and very -- one that especially and those that give another aspect of safety to our schools.
No child should have to go through anything in schools by someone who is crazy enough to take a gun into a school or any place, and shoot people indiscriminately. We've got to make sure that we are doing that protection. And again, is that the best alternative? Probably not what you'd want to have.
My wife is a teacher. But at the same point in time, we also have to find ways of providing security. If that's with that aspect, fine, but also, I also think need to look at school resource officers, hardening the schools a little bit so that people can't just walk in and out. The simple safety procedures that we know that make them targets because they're gun-free zones, this is what makes them targets.
KILMEADE: Yes. It's a shame it's come to that, but I also think churches have got to look into it too. I mean, how many times are we going to express outrage and anger until we've realized that these cowards don't want to be shot back at. They want to slaughter people, they don't want to fight.
COLLINS: Exactly right. I was pastor for -- a senior pastor for 11 years, I understand that security and in the church I attend now, we do have security. We have armed security because we understand it's not being over -- its just being honest with the situation in which we have and -- and as long as people know that, they're going to tend (ph) to stay away from that.
KILMEADE: Absolutely. I mean, Doug Collins, we appreciate it. You have a lot on your plate, appreciate what you're doing. One of the few people in Congress who can make a speech without staring down at their notes, I've noticed. Congressman, thanks so much.
COLLINS: I appreciate it, Brian, you take care.